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Showing posts from February, 2016

The Confessions of X

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The Confessions of X is an extremely unique book. In it, Suzanne M. Wolfe paints an intriguing and ultimately realistic picture of the "nameless woman from history", the concubine of Augustine. Augustine was an extremely influential church father and a theologian who helped form much of the Western Christian church. I was interested in this book because I do occasionally enjoy historical fiction (especially when it's biblically-related historical fiction) and the premise was so fresh and different that I figured I'd give it a try. The book description reads:

"Before he became a father of the Christian Church, Augustine of Hippo loved a woman whose name has been lost to history. This is her story.

She met Augustine in Carthage when she was seventeen. She was the poor daughter of a mosaic-layer; he was a promising student and heir to a fortune. His brilliance and passion intoxicated her, but his social class would be forever beyond her reach. She became his concu…

Jesus Speaks

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I was drawn to Steven K. Scott's new devotional book, Jesus Speaks: 365 Days of Daily Guidance and Encouragement, Straight from the Words of Christ, first of all because of its beautiful cover - it truly is gorgeous and inviting! Secondly, I love devotional books. I have a plethora of them and love to add different ones as a supplement to my daily Bible reading. I will often choose three devotional books and read one at breakfasttime, one at lunchtime, and one at bedtime. With that said, I was excited to add Jesus Speaks to my devotional routine because it seemed fresh and intriguing, and I thought it would give me some new insights into the life and teachings of Christ. The book description reads:

"What Happens When You Immerse Your Life in the Words of Jesus?
“Jesus’ words can replace stress with peace, sadness with joy, confusion with guidance, and fear with faith. That’s why Jesus Speaks will not only change your day, but it can also change your life, your relationships,…

Breaking Busy

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I was drawn to Breaking Busy by Alli Worthington because, like most women today, I'm often struggling to balance my life - time management, business, and trying to find the time to fit everything in my day are issues I deal with on a constant basis. I like to read books about time management and books about cutting down on the stresses and business of life, and this book combined both of these concepts together. The book description reads:

"Have you ever felt like a fraud or failure as you struggle to find balance in life? Do you find yourself juggling everything in mediocrity and feeling like you’re succeeding at very little? In her no-nonsense way, Alli Worthington tackles the big questions about finding happiness and one’s God-given purpose.

Breaking Busy marries popular secular research from the fields of social and positive psychology with solid biblical principles, instilling readers with the confidence that they, too, can move from crazy busy to confident calm. With r…

The Secret To Hummingbird Cake

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The Secret To Hummingbird Cake by Celeste Fletcher McHale is an atmospheric tale chock full of Southern charm. Part chick lit, part inspiration, part Fried Green Tomatoes, this engaging and unique tale highlights the lifelong friendship between Carri, Laine, and Ella Rae. I was looking for a book that was a comfortable, fun, easy read that still packed an inspiring punch and was full of depth, and this one fit the bill. The book description reads:

"“Why won’t you just tell me what’s in that cake?” I’d been trying to get Laine’s recipe for years. We all had.

When all else fails, turn to the divine taste of hummingbird cake.

In the South you always say “yes, ma’am” and “no, ma’am.” You know everybody’s business. Football is a lifestyle not a pastime. Food—especially dessert— is almost a religious experience. And you protect your friends as fiercely as you protect your family— even if the threat is something you cannot see.

In this spot-on Southern novel brimming with wit and authe…

The Lifegiving Home

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I was super excited to receive a copy of The Lifegiving Home: Creating a Place of Belonging and Becoming by Sally and Sarah Clarkson. As a wife and stay at home mom, I'm always looking for ways to make our home more peaceful, relaxing, godly, and, well ... lifegiving! I eagerly anticipated its arrival and opened it up as soon as I got it. First of all, the cover of this book is just beautiful. It immediately gave me a peaceful, homey feeling. But let's move onto the inside of the book - the description reads:

"How to make home your family’s favorite place to be . . . all year long.
Does your home sometimes feel like just a place to eat, sleep, and change clothes on the way to the next activity? Do you long for “home” to mean more than a place where you stash your stuff? Wouldn’t you love it to become a haven of warmth, rest, and joy . . . the one place where you and your family can’t wait to be?

There is good news waiting for you in the pages of The Lifegiving Home. Ever…

The Gentle Art Of Discipling Women

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I was excited to receive a copy of The Gentle Art of Discipling Women: Nurturing Authentic Faith in Ourselves and Others by Dana Yeakley to review. As a member of a large and active Sunday School class and care group leader, I frequently have the opportunity to disciple Christian women who are newer and younger in the faith. I sometimes feel unprepared or uncomfortable when called upon to disciple other women, so I'm always looking for tools to help me feel more confident in helping others. Books like this can be very helpful in the process of discipling others. The book description reads:

"Discipleship is a responsibility of every believer, yet many of us avoid doing it because we don’t know where to start. The Gentle Art of Discipling Women provides a framework for discipleship from the mentoring voice of a seasoned discipler. Dana Yeakley walks with you through the foundational principles of who you are in Christ and how you are uniquely equipped to pass along what He has…

The Newsmakers

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The Newsmakers is the second book I've read by Lis Wiehl, the first being Snapshot. I had trouble getting into that book so I was a bit worried to try The Newsmakers, but the description sounded so interesting that I decided to give it a shot anyway. I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed this book much more that Snapshot. I'm not sure if that's because the plot was just more interesting to me, or because it was co-written with Sebastian Stuart. Either way, The Newsmakers was a great book. The description reads:

"TV reporter Erica Sparks has become a superstar overnight. Is it due to her hard work and talent, or is she at the center of a spiraling conspiracy?

Erica Sparks is a beautiful and ambitious reporter who has just landed her dream job at Global News Network in New York. And while it was hard to leave Jenny, her cherished eight-year-old daughter, in the custody of her ex-husband, Erica is determined to succeed in the cutthroat world of big-time broadcasting…

The Quality Of Silence

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The Quality of Silence by Rosamund Lupton is a very unique and different thriller. With eccentric characters (Yasmin, an astrophysicist, and Ruby, her deaf child) and a novel setting (remote Alaska), this book caught my interest right away. A book based on a premise like this can either be really, really good or really, really bad, but I'm glad to say this one fell into the really, really good category. The book description reads:

"The gripping, moving story of a mother and daughter's quest to uncover a dark secret in the Alaskan wilderness, from the New York Times bestselling author of Sister and Afterwards

Thrillingly suspenseful and atmospheric, The Quality of Silence is the story of Yasmin, a beautiful astrophysicist, and her precocious deaf daughter, Ruby, who arrive in a remote part of Alaska to be told that Ruby's father, Matt, has been the victim of a catastrophic accident. Unable to accept his death as truth, Yasmin and Ruby set out into the hostile winter o…

Miriam

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Miriam is the second book in the Treasures of the Nile series by Mesu Andrews. The first book in the series was The Pharaoh's Daughter, which was absolutely incredible. I've been eagerly anticipating the second installment in the series, so was super excited to receive an advance copy of Miriam. I definitely wasn't disappointed. The book description reads:

"The Hebrews call me prophetess, the Egyptians a seer.
But I am neither. I am simply a watcher of Israel
and the messenger of El Shaddai.
When He speaks to me in dreams, I interpret. When He whispers a melody, I sing.

At eighty-six, Miriam had devoted her entire life to loving El Shaddai and serving His people as both midwife and messenger. Yet when her brother Moses returns to Egypt from exile, he brings a disruptive message. God has a new name – Yahweh – and has declared a radical deliverance for the Israelites.

Miriam and her beloved family face an impossible choice: cling to familiar bondage or embrace unchar…

The Feathered Bone

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The Feathered Bone is the first book I've read by Julie Cantrell, but I'm always looking for new books in my favorite genre - Christian mystery/suspense - so I decided to give it a shot. Besides the intriguing title and the appealing cover, the premise sounded very interesting. The setting, pre-Katrina New Orleans, is fresh and intriguing. I liked the missing-person angle and the how the plot focused on the effect a missing person has on their friends and family. The book description reads:

"“Feathers—no matter what size or shape or color—are all the same, if you think about them. They’re soft. Delicate. But the secret thing about feathers is . . . they are very strong.”

In the pre-Katrina glow of New Orleans, Amanda Salassi is anxious about chaperoning her daughter’s sixth-grade field trip to the Big Easy during Halloween. And then her worst fears come true. Her daughter’s best friend, Sarah, disappears amid the magic and revelry—gone, without a trace.

Unable to cope wi…